The Four A’s


“Everyone you meet
comes with baggage.
Find someone who
loves you enough
to help you unpack.”

Four As.jpg


Dr. Deepak Chopra is an author and alternative-medicine advocate. TIME magazine describes Dr. Chopra as “one of the top 100 heroes and icons of the century. He’s a prominent figure in the New Age movement, and his books and videos have made him one of the best-known in alternative medicine.

In one of his recent weekly Podcast’s he spoke about the four keys to a successful relationship, which he called the four words that begin with A. 

Acceptance, don’t try to change them, or try to prove them wrong
Appreciation, notice their strengths
Affection, let them know that you care
Attention, be a good listener

Sometimes, we find ourselves focusing on peoples faults and we see them and say to ourselves, “oh no there they go again”, when they do something that angers us or annoys us. We get frustrated and annoyed at them or even very angry at them. When this happens, whether it’s a personal or professional relationship the first thing we need to do is remember:

What is our shared vision with this person? What is the emotional bond with them? Most importantly, what are their strengths? How do these strengths complement yours. We all have unique strengths.

We also may have times in our life where we fall out of rhythm or we see the persons differently and not how they were when you first started in the relationship. This is the time in the relationship when you press the pause button in your internal mind, and you say to yourself, what am I observing? Ask yourself, what am I feeling? What is missing here? How do we fulfill this missing need? You can also ask the other person the same questions. Most importantly you ask them what are you needing from me and how can I help you? It’s important to be open and honest without being critical and accusing.

We need to periodically check-in with our partner which often is scary.  We need to be honest and often we might not get an answer we want to hear. If that happens, say to them, at least I offered you help and I’m here for you.

We take on the energy that is around us. These energies, fears, anger, happiness, sadness, no matter what these energies may be are contagious. If you find yourself absorbing peoples emotions and their negative energy which can affect your energy and positive outlook, we must decide that you are going to be independent of anger, criticism, and flattery. This way we get in touch with our true self. Don’t tell them their negative energy is affecting you, because it will only make matters worse. The best thing to do is, ask yourself, what is the most creative way to nurture this relationship?

That’s it. Sounds simple, but it’s not easy to apply these techniques when we’re in a challenging relationship. It needs a little practice in our daily lives. How about beginning with each day using just one of the four A’s.

Shine On

Lift My Spirits


“The mind is everything.
What you think you become.” 


Positive thinking

If you’re looking to have a more positive 2020, there’s a book I highly recommend, “Wokini: A Lakota Journey to Happiness and Self-Understanding”, by Billy Mills. Translated from Lakota, “Wokini” means “seeking a new beginning” or “seeking a new vision.” This book taught me about myself, and showed me what it means to be happy. It also guided me on my own personal journey to feel more satisfied in my life.

The book is a wonderful blend of modern therapeutic principles, positive thinking; self-awareness; and Native American beliefs in meditation, thought, dreams, and respect for the harmony and balance of nature.

The Wokini way of life and thinking has helped me a great deal this past year. Whenever I feel stressed or angered from the most minuscule thing, I just chant Wokini and do some breathing exercises. This simple chant keeps me from bringing negativity into my life and most of all helps lift my spirits.

Shine On

Ballet Beautiful

Edgar Degas Self Portrait

Edgar Degas 1834-1917


It’s been over a century since French painter Edgar Degas lived and died. This self portrait of Degas is on display at the Metropolitan Museum of art in New York City.

More than any other of the great artist from the impressionist era, Degas was fascinated by the powerful and exciting world of ballet. Degas was masterly at capturing in his paintings the flowing movements of ballerina’s on stage, candid poses of young dancers waiting in the wings and in rehearsal halls and dance classes.

Ballarenas by Degas

Edgar Degas – The Dancing Class 1871

Although Degas painted other subject matter, Degas was enchanted by what he called a “fairy like illusion of the ballet”. He admired ballerinas hard work which often the public never witnessed.

It wasn’t that long ago ballet performances were only enjoyed by the rich and famous and rarely did the underprivileged experience the beauty and wonder of ballet. Thanks to movies and television the public is much more aware of the beauty, hard work and discipline it takes to become a prima ballerina.

I’m an admirer of Edgar Degas paintings not for just his painting style, but also for the beauty and the grace of ballet. Live performances of ballet along with any movies or tv with ballet is one of my favorite visual experiences.

Although I never dreamed of becoming a ballerina, I always found ballet classes and ballet based workouts my favorite. In recent years, my go to workout is, Mary Helen Bower’s, Ballet Beautiful dvd tapes.

Ballet BeutifulMary Bowers is the prima ballerina who trained Natalie Portman for the 2010 movie, Black Swan. What I love most about Bower’s workout routine is I can do 15 minutes or more of Ballet Beautiful workouts in the privacy of my living room. The workouts are great for toning, elongating your body and just stretching to gain better mobility and balance. Doing this workout gives me energy and lifts my spirit.

If you’re looking to gain strength and quickly tone your body, you don’t have to be female, or join a gym or even be a prima ballerina to enjoy the benefits of Ballet Beautiful.

Shine On